Andrew

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Everything posted by Andrew

  1. I don't tout my work here as often as I used to, but this is the best new film I've seen in almost a year; a perfect meshing of screenwriting, visual, musical, editing, intellectual and emotional content. My full review: http://www.patheos.com/blogs/secularcinephile/2017/02/not-negro-delivers-unforgettable-look-black-american-experience/
  2. My wife and I loved this (Season 1 > 3 > 2). The final season is batshit crazy but iresistibly watchable. I couldn't tolerate Lost, nor the source material for this show, but yeah, this worked for me. Terrific finale; the entire third season explores the desperate things that people will believe to make grief and the brevity of life bearable, but credibly keeps an open mind as to the objective veracity of some of those beliefs. As Iris Dement's opening tune states, they're willing to let the mystery be.
  3. If you have teens (especially, by my informal survey, teenaged daughters), they've likely already watched this series. In a moment of deep pride for me, my daughter and I co-wrote a review of the series (in which, truth be told, she did the heavy lifting). We both agree that the show is a substantial success aesthetically (using the talents of folks like Jessica Yu, Gregg Araki, and Tom McCarthy), but fails by its irresponsible handling of serious topics like teen suicide and sexual trauma. Here's the link to our full analysis: http://www.patheos.com/blogs/secularcinephile/2017/06/high-school-trauma-edutainment-teenagers-dads-responses-13-reasons/
  4. This was an excellent read (or listen, actually). I hope the film does it right; for its theme, it was surprisingly un-bitter and understated.
  5. Thank you for all of that exposition, Peter. I thought Prometheus was fun and creepy, even if it had way too much of scientists behaving stupidly. Covenant, OTOH, just felt flat and predictable after its first 30 minutes. Here's my full review, though it feels a bit extraneous after Peter's commentary: http://www.patheos.com/blogs/secularcinephile/2017/05/alien-covenant-starts-promisingly-fails-stretch/
  6. Title: The WayDirector: Emilio EstevezYear: 2010Language: EnglishIMDB Link: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1441912/?ref_=nv_sr_2YouTube Link (a clip of/trailer for the film): Link to the A&F thread on the film (if there is one):
  7. It's been available on HBO for a month or so, but I finally got around to watching it. I thought this was an excellent overview of recent Syrian events, offering clarity while not sacrificing accuracy. Very gutsy reporting (much of the footage was captured by ordinary Syrian citizens and activists), but it's not for the faint of heart, as it doesn't flinch away from showing the actions and consequences of the brutality perpetrated by Assad, Putin, and ISIS. Here's the link to my full review: http://www.patheos.com/blogs/secularcinephile/2017/05/cries-syria-illuminating-gut-wrenching-masterclass-current-events-filmmaking/
  8. Hey all: I thought it might be worthwhile to do an analogous thread to 'What We're Watching' in the Film section - i.e., books that we found worthwhile, but we're not sure they merit an entire thread. Anyway, here's a book that I've found enlightening recently: Epileptic, by David B. - this is a French autobio-graphic novel, telling the story of David's childhood/adolescent/early adulthood years in the shadow of an older brother with intractable seizures. To say the least, his parents were not traditionally minded, so the family visited macrobiotic communes, acupuncturists, magnetists, among others, in seeking a cure. As this occurs, David feels increasingly angered by his brother's sickness, as he realizes he is powerless to offer any meaningful aid. The artwork on the pages is quite distinctive, as David often depicts a heavy dose of spiritual forces that are involved in these trials for a cure - the darkness on display on certain pages is almost overwhelming at times, yet I found this to be a worthwhile window into this family's suffering.
  9. I know Gray's earlier film The Immigrant got lotsa love around here, but I think this is even better: http://www.patheos.com/blogs/secularcinephile/2017/04/lost-city-z-enchanting-throwback-progressive-twist/
  10. No mention anywhere of Saul Williams' "Martyr Loser King"? That album is blowing my mind.
  11. I read the rules in the opening post, but I thought the precedent was no movies from the previous calendar year, to avoid overenthusing about recent releases.
  12. Sigh...more exploding monuments, holding separating objects together with webs, silly antagonism between superheroes...been there, done that too many times now. I don't know that I'll even see this one as a rental.
  13. I still enjoy thoughtful film criticism, partly because I want to read what other folks have to say and also as a way to hone my analytic and writing skills. Like Justin, with Ebert's passing I don't have a favorite popular film critic, but I'll sift through RT's top critics and read what interests me. (I also just subscribed to Film Comment, figuring it was time to do so, instead of paging through it at the local bookshop every couple of months.) It's interesting to see the comments here about film ratings, too. If I had to guess, most of my reviews probably fall into the 3.5 to 4 star range, for a couple of reasons: 1) I'm very selective about what I view on the big screen and write about anymore (I like for my weekly written review to be about a film that I really give a damn about); and 2) like Ebert in his last several years, I'd rather err on the side of generosity and praise what is praiseworthy. And yeah, I think the "end of criticism" is a load of hoohah, just like the "end of ---" shtick almost always is.
  14. Six months out, I don't recall a lot of specifics, but I liked Frantz quite a bit when I saw it at TIFF last year.
  15. Fair enough, y'all. We've got a great community thing going on here that long ago earned my lasting trust and respect, so I'll participate in a (no pun intended) good faith manner.
  16. This is kind of what I was afraid of, and why I voted for "coming of age." I understand that the site and list is geared mostly to Christian readers and viewers, so no hard feelings on my part, but as a non-believer I'll be sitting this one out.
  17. My social phobia maybe gives me a way to connect to Chiron, but I find his desire to melt silently into the background wherever he goes entirely plausible and (ack, I hate this word) relatable.
  18. Aww, he must be so proud to be writing for a publication that opposed the Civil Rights Movement and supported apartheid.
  19. Agreed - Chris and Rod were delightful together.
  20. I've heard it's a good idea to skip the trailers on this one. Horror is not my favorite genre, not by far, but I thought this was excellent. It has some very good twists, and the social commentary is quite smart and cutting. I seem to like one horror film per year on average, so this will be it, I guess (last year, it was The Witch). Here's my review: http://www.patheos.com/blogs/secularcinephile/2017/02/suspense-horror-comedy-social-commentary-blend-masterfully-get/